The Ruslan Fedotenko Era with the New York Rangers has come to a close this afternoon. After two seasons with the team, Fedotenko has signed with the Philadelphia Flyers. Again. As an undrafted free agent, Fedotenko was signed by the Flyers back in 1999. After two seasons, he was delt to the Tampa Bay Lightning where he met Brad Richards and John Tortorella and won the Stanely Cup. Fedotenko then moved on to the New York Islanders and the Pittsburgh Penguins (where he won a second Stanley Cup).
It’s sad to see Fedotenko leave the team, even sadder to know the Philadelphia Flyers will have him. His on ice production was nothing spectacular, below average really, but what will be missed is his experience. The New York Rangers are a young franchise; the players are the youngest they’ve ever been in a while, and Fedotenko was a good guy to have on the bench as guidance. Of the entire roster, he, Brad Richards, and Mike Rupp are the only ones who know what it’s like to go 16 wins in the playoffs and lift the Stanley Cup. Their guidance is immeasurable and it would have been nice to see the New York Rangers retain that off ice presence.
The departure of Fedotenko does not mean a ton of cap space has been freed up (his hit was only $1.4 million), nor does it mean the Rangers will be losing many goals, but a fan favorite has played his last game as a Ranger. Moving forward will be easy, but there will be a sad moment when Fedotenko steps out on the ice in Flyer orange for that first game.
I want to wish him all the best as a Flyer, but come on, it’s the Flyers.
Lets Go Rangers!